A research visit to an Earthship…

English: A picture of the workings of natural ...

English: A picture of the workings of natural ventilation in a earthship. Schematic was based on a picture found in the book “Earthship Vol 2:Systems and Components by Michael Reynolds (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Elly and I are in the planning stages of our earth bermed house project which we hope to be living in in a year or so. About a mile or so from our current house is an “Earthship“, a particular style of earth bermed house, originally designed and promoted by New mexico architect Mike Reynolds.  It is built with walls made out of earth-filled automobile tires that are then covered with clay and cement.

It uses south-facing solar windows and a number of other things (like greywater cisterns) which we are planning on.

While this is not the method of building we are looking at, it has enough of the same features that we felt it would be a source of information for us. Owners Larry and Karen spent four years doing much of the building themselves and they were a fountain of information answering all of our questions and giving us advice. We have a number of leads to look up that they have directed us to.

I’ll be getting into more stuff about our new house plan as we go along.

Side view of the Earthship near us.

About btchakir

Retired Theatre Producer, Graphic Designer, Usability Tester and General Troubleshooter with a keen interest in Politics and The Stage. Currently heard on WSHC, 89.7 FM (on line at www.897wshc.org) and occasionally dabbling in Community Theatre.

Posted on July 27, 2012, in Art, Climate Change, creativity, Education, Interview, News, Opinion, Rural, Technology, Weather, Word from Bill and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Main issue out here in Kah-lee-foh-neah is that our earth doesn’t stay in one place. It’s always shaking and jiggling like a bowl of jello. So most of our houses are set up on foundations intended to shake and jiggle with the earth, and the house above is set up to flex and sway and swing with the shake, because simply sitting in one place would tear it to pieces — our earth is moving in too many directions with the force of multiple atomic bombs going off, so it’d tear it apart. This actually caused injuries on the top floors of the Transamerica Pyramid during the last semi-big earthquake because Pyramid sits on top of a giant spring-loaded ball bearing to let the pyramid move with the Earth and the tip of the pyramid was whipping back and forth five feet in all directions, sending the people inside rolling around like bowling pins.

    So anyhow, that’s a cool concept, but I can’t see any way to make it get past seismic review here in California. If I won the IPO lottery I’d probably end up with a small rustic cottage in a funky hill community, because that’ll pass seismic review…

  2. All the best to you on building your efficient home! I had the chance to stay in an Earthship in New Mexico a couple months ago and enjoyed every moment of it. The natural ventilation system works beautifully.

  3. We are also building an earthship in Orania, South Africa.

    See http://www.aardskip.com and click on “BLOG” to see our progress.

  4. Reblogged this on Take to Change and commented:
    A closer look at one of the Earth Ships. I really do love these designs, so intuitive and well thought out, taking all things into consideration from a ‘permaculture’ perspective!

  5. Amazing! One day I aspire to have a place like this!

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